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ACS Appl Mater Interfaces. 2013 Feb;5(3):1070-7. doi: 10.1021/am3028487. Epub 2013 Jan 30.

Topography and coating of platinum improve the electrochemical properties and neuronal guidance.

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Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V., Hollerithallee 8, 30419 Hannover, Germany.


To improve neuronal-electrode interfaces, we analyzed the influence of surface topographies combined with coating on the electrochemistry of platinum and neuronal differentiation of PC-12 cells. Surface structuring on nanoscale was realized by femtosecond laser ablation. Additional coating with laminin (LA), collagen type I (COL) or poly-d-lysine (PDL) did not change the produced topography. We further demonstrated that impedance could be improved in all cases. The pre-requisites of differentiation - viability and attachment - were fulfilled on the topography. Cell attachment of non-differentiated and differentiated cells and their formation of focal adhesion complexes were even enhanced compared to unstructured platinum. However, without the nerve growth factor (NGF) no cellular outgrowth and differentiation were possible. The topography enabled cell elongation and reduced the amount of rounded cells, but less effective than coating. Differentiation was either comparable or increased on the structures when compared with unstructured coatings. For instance, microtubule associated protein (MAP2) was detected most on the topography alone. But a combination of surface structuring and coating had the strongest impact on differentiation: the usage of COL provoked best cell elongation and beta III tubulin expression, PDL best synaptophysin. LA-coating had no noteworthy effect. These findings point out that innovative electronic devices like cochlear implants include two aspects: (a) nanotopography to improve the transmission of electrical signals and neuronal attachment; and (b) an additional coating to stimulate neuronal differentiation.

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